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Just Go Out and Do It

February 3rd, 2012

Life on the Maine coast is hard, but it is a good life, a quality life, a way of living simply in troubled times. When Scott Nearing was ninety-five, I heard him give a lecture at the Common Ground Fair in Litchfield, Maine. He talked about gardening and homesteading, and concluded by telling the audience, “If you want to have a garden, just go out and do it. Just go out and do it.” I’ve often heard those words as I think about taking on a new project or expanding the gardens. Despite any divergence from Scott’s philosophy and practice Lynn and I have taken as we made the Maine farm ours, that too would be my best advice to anyone thinking of creating a new life for themselves: “Just go out and do it!”.

Stanley Joseph from Maine Farm: A Year of Country Life

I read this book a couple years ago and have been meaning to buy it. I actually forgot the name of it and had trouble finding it again until a few weeks ago. It was written by the couple who took over the Nearing homestead. When it arrived in the mail, Mr Chiots decided to read it. One evening, while we were sitting in the living reading, he said to me, “I just flipped to the afterward of the book to see where they are now and listen to this…” He then continued to read the quote above.

He continued to talk about how this was exactly what he needed to hear as we think about starting a new chapter in our lives. We’ve spent the last month or two looking at houses in Maine, Vermont and a few other New England states. After choosing a location we thought would suite us perfectly, we called a realtor, rearranged our schedule, and set off to Maine. Today we’re on our way home from this journey, with a lot to talk about during the 12 hour drive. You’ll be hearing all about what we saw and experienced over the coming weeks (perhaps a poll so you can help us choose which house to purchase).

This quote really resonates with us right now. You see, we’ve been dragging our feet a little, reluctant to give up the comfort we’ve achieved here for the unknown. Our reluctance is starting to turn to excitement, even though we know we have a lot of hard work and long days ahead. I have no doubt the future will bring many rewards and we’ll never regret just getting out and doing it.

Do you have something that’s been nagging your mind that you need to just go out and do?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.